August 13, 2014 + Humility in Dealings with Your Neighbor


by St. Ignatius Briachaninov

Through humility in your dealings with your neighbor, and through love for your neighbor, hardness and callousness is expelled from the heart. It is rolled away like a heavy rock from the entrance to a tomb, and the heart revives for spiritual relations with God for which it has been hitherto dead. A new vista opens to the gaze of the mind: the multitudinous wounds of sin with which the whole fallen nature is riddled. It begins to confess its wretched state to God and implore Him for mercy. The heart assists the mind with mourning and compunction. This is the beginning of true prayer.

On the other hand, the prayer of a resentful person St. Isaac the Syrian compares with sowing on rock. The same must be said of the prayer of one who condemns and despises his neighbor. God not only does not attend to the prayer of one who is proud and angry, but He even permits a person praying in such a state of soul to undergo various most humiliating temptations so that being struck and oppressed by them he may resort to humility in his relations with his neighbor and to love for his neighbor.

St. Ignatius Briachaninov, The Arena: An Offering to Comtemporary Monasticism, translated by Arch. Lazarus, Holy Trinity Monastery Jordanville, N.Y., 1997, p. 65.

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Leavingtaking of the Transfiguration of our Lord 

Troparion, Tone 7

You were transfigured on the mountain, O Christ God, revealing Your glory to Your disciples as far as they could bear it. Let Your everlasting Light also shine upon us sinners, through the prayers of the Theotokos.  O Giver of Light, glory to You!

Kontakion, Tone 7

On the Mountain You were Transfigured, O Christ God, And Your disciples beheld Your glory as far as they could see it; So that when they would behold You crucified, They would understand that Your suffering was voluntary, And would proclaim to the world, That You are truly the Radiance of the Father!